Cognitive and Motivational Consequences of Tutoring and Discovery Learning
Final rept. Aug 92-Mar 94
NORTHWESTERN UNIV EVANSTON IL
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A central controversy in the design of instruction concerns the amount of freedom or guidance that should be provided to students. We examined the cognitive and motivational consequences of guidance and freedom in a learning environment used by students learning introductory programming. Students worked with one of three interactive learning environments that varied in the amount of freedom to explore or guidance provided. We argue that discovery learning creates more opportunities for students to assess how well they can overcome obstacles, and their resulting attitudes toward their past and future success in the domain relies heavily on this type of attribution. The positive or negative nature of that attribution will depend on their relative success in achieving their goals.